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Bixi bike rack in Toronto's financial district April 30, 2013.

Moe Doiron/The Globe and Mail

Bixi Toronto, the bikeshare program floundering under a city loan debt, will most likely not be rescued by the Toronto Transit Commission.

A staff report to be brought forth at the commission's meeting on Wednesday recommends the TTC not integrate Bixi into its services.

"BIXI is a bike-sharing program which is not part of the TTC's core business of providing mass transit and would constitute a distraction from the TTC's already-challenging mandate," the report reads, while also highlighting Bixi's financial difficulties, calling the program "not financially sustainable."

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Launched in the spring of 2011, the Bixi bikeshare program is no longer able to meet its debt payments, including a $3.9-million loan guaranteed by the city. Earlier this summer, Mayor Rob Ford's executive committee voted to send the issue back to city staff for a report on how to keep the program above water. The report will be presented to the committee at its next meeting in the fall.

City Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, an executive committee member, said the TTC was never a preferred option for saving the popular program.

"The TTC has a lot more pressing issues, like making their trains run on time and their buses run on time," Mr. Minnan-Wong said. "They need to focus on core business and making that efficient before they look at other projects."

As for how to keep Bixi from crashing and burning – which would cost the city its $4-million investment – Mr. Minnan-Wong had earlier proposed a unique idea: using money previously intended for high-tech public washrooms and reinvesting it into Bixi.

Mr. Ford has called the program a "failure," but Mr. Minnan-Wong said the executive committee hopes the staff report will provide enough recommendations to find a solution to save the Bixi bikes.

"We're looking for solution that's going to address the program's capital shortfalls while allowing for a modest expansion that can improve service but also bear additional revenue," he said. "A lot of people want to save Bixi. They believe there's a public good in having a public bike system."

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